Drones could save your life in a natural disaster

With Japan’s track record of natural disasters, the country is understandably always on the lookout for ways to better prepare itself.

Japan is now looking to the skies, working to develop drones to help out in the case of an earthquake or other trouble.

ドローンで避難誘導 震災時、上空から安全確保(17/02/11) by ANNnewsCH on YouTube

The country last week trialled special drones mounted with speaker systems that can direct citizens to nearby evacuation areas, reports Jiji Press. These busy bees also monitor wind speeds around skyscrapers, taking images of the streets below.

With GPS built into the devices, self-flying was also tested, with the drones moving along set flight paths through the high-rise area.

The trials took place in Shinjuku, a highly populated area in Tokyo, with radio channels built specially for the test.

It’s not the first attempt by Japan to use new tech for disaster prevention — a university in the country last year looked to Oculus Rift to train citizens on how to act in the case of a tsunami, for instance. Meanwhile, drones last were in the spotlight at the Super Bowl, when Intel-powered drones lit the sky up.

This article originally appeared on CNET.